Counting Business Days
Hi, Anthony again from Contractors Debt Recovery and welcome to the second video series. We’ve had amazing feedback from the first series. A lot of people forwarding them on and most importantly a lot of people saying this is really useful information they could put to use very very quickly and only took a few minutes a day to have a look at it. So we’re kicking off with a new series and we’ve got the white board up. You see a little bit more of me, lucky you, in going through this whole new series of information to construction contractors.
So what we’re going to talk about today is very simply counting days. Now what we’re going to address here is the issue of how to count days. Now that sounds extremely simple, and probably even insulting, but how often contractors using the Security of Payment Act do not count their days effectively. They do not count business days properly and get the whole thing mixed up and ultimately invalidated. The other type of day counting is simply calendar days, normal days. Contracts require payment to happen in X number of days or notices to be given within a certain number of days. So how do you count those? So commonly that’s mixed up. So we’re very simply going to address that here.
Let’s talk about business days first. Business Days. A business day is any other day other than a weekend or a public holiday generally speaking. And a public holiday as applies in your jurisdiction or in your state. Now the big frequent you count business days is remember that day one is not the day you get a notice, it’s the day after.
So for example, if you need to submit, let’s say you want to serve a payment claim under the act and the respondent has to set the payment schedule within 10 business days. If you serve the client here, Day 1 is not that date. Day 1 is the next business day. That’s a Monday let’s say. Next business day Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday, Sunday then Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday. The following Friday a week Friday a week. Leaving out the weekends and making sure Day 1 is the day after you’ve served the client.
Now the respondent has 10 business days to send you a payment schedule and likewise Day 1 starts the day after they get it. So if they’ve received a claim on this day from you, they’ve got until this day to send you a payment schedule. Same with five business days with follow up notice 17.2 notice or 18.2 notice or 21.2 notice depending on which state you’re in the same thing applies, five business days starting the day after.
So if the due dates for payment fell here, you can only serve those notices after the due dates of payment. If it fell here then from Day 1 the next day you can serve that notice. A very common mistake in Security of Payment is where a due dates of payment is 10 business days after receiving the claim and the contractor will serve a claim right at the 10 days and then move on to the next notice on the same day because they’ve forgotten that Day 1 is the day after the claim is received by the respondent not the same day. They make a mistake of the day. All right, I hope that’s clear to you so please start on the next day.
Now if we talk about calendar days. The same thing except weekends, public holidays, everything is included. So if under the contract payment is due within 28 days we assumed just 28 days. Again, Day 1 is the day after. So if payment is due within 28 days, it will normally say of receiving the claim. If your client receives the claim on this day, Day 1 is the next day and you count forward 28 days. And on Day 28 payment is due on that day. Again, a very common mistake starting Day 1 as the same day.
So the one thing that falls out of this is you need to be able to absolutely prove that a claim was sent on that day or that the due date payment is that day. So with the claim why do I insist that the claim should be served by carrier or fax is that you’ve got proof that that is the day. And if you can proof that is the day the claim was received then you’re very confident in saying well that’ the Day 1 and that’s Day 2 etc. etc.
If you post a claim, you may post it at that day but did they get the post that day? Did they get it then? You might have emailed it on that day but maybe they only open that email that day. Very hard to know where the day starts to count from. So that’s why I insist documents should be served by fax with a transmission report or by carrier. You can prove the day it was received and then you can count days effectively.
I won’t go on too much more about that. It’s a fairly straightforward. Remember your pubic holidays in whichever state you’re in Commonwealth holidays and state based holidays. Remember your weekends and your long weekends account for those and start with Day 1 the day after. So if you got any other queries or questions about Security of Payment or just want to talks us just contact us at the number on your screen and we’ll be happy to help out. See you next time.